David A. Attisani

David Attisani is a partner in Choate's Insurance & Reinsurance Group, one of the leading practices of its kind in the U.S., which is top-ranked by Reactions (#1 reinsurance and litigation firm in 2012) and by The 2013 Legal 500 guide to preeminent law firms. He is also co-chairman of the ABA’s Reinsurance Subcommittee and a member of the ARIAS-US Education Committee (2013-present).

Mr. Attisani was the first-ever Boston-area attorney to be recognized in the Chambers USA nationwide rankings for Insurance/Reinsurance (2014-2017).  He was also named one of Law360's "10 Most Admired Insurance Attorneys in America" for 2010—out of 1,016 nominations from 100 firms.  He is one of only 12 reinsurance lawyers listed in The 2016 and 2017 Legal 500’s elite “Leading Lawyers” category, a designation he also received in 2015, 2012 and 2011. Mr. Attisani was also elected to Best of the Best USA (2009-2014) in Insurance & Reinsurance, which recognizes only 30 US industry professionals. In 2018, he was named as a global “Thought Leader” in the field of Insurance and Reinsurance by Who’s Who Legal and was included in the top 2 percent of all the eminent practitioners listed across Who’s Who Legal guides. In 2016, Mr. Attisani was one of only 5 U.S. insurance and reinsurance attorneys to be named “Most Highly Regarded” in the 13th annual edition of Who’s Who Legal: Insurance & Reinsurance  (he is also one of 15 in the world). He was also elected to the World’s Leading Insurance and Reinsurance Lawyers (2006-2017). Mr. Attisani is listed in Best Lawyers in America for Insurance Law (2012-2017).

Mr. Attisani is a Fellow of the American College of Coverage and Extracontractual Counsel, a group of preeminent insurance and reinsurance lawyers in the US and Canada. Membership is obtained by nomination only and is limited to 1,000 lawyers with at least 15 years of experience. He is also a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, where membership is limited to one percent of lawyers licensed to practice in each jurisdiction. Mr. Attisani is a member of the International Association of Defense Counsel, one of the most prestigious legal organizations in the world.

Practice Focus

Insurance & Reinsurance Litigation:  insurance coverage and reinsurance arbitration and litigation on behalf of reinsurers, cedents and intermediaries; risk management; alternative dispute resolution; coverage arbitration and litigation for insurance companies involving financial issues, environmental damage, E&O/D&O, variable annuities, asbestos, 9/11 losses, clergy abuse claims, toxic tort and health risks (Obamacare).

Representative Engagements

  • Currently represent top reinsurer in well-publicized dispute involving fungal contamination allegedly attributed to pharma products.
  • Currently serve as lead counsel in the “Big Dig”/Central Artery Connector coverage litigation.
  • Currently represent top cedent in connection with clergy abuse claims.
  • Currently represent domestic reinsurer in $100M property/captive reinsurance dispute.
  • Currently represent top 10 global reinsurer in connection with losses emanating from allegations of sexual abuse by clergy.
  • Currently represent domestic cedent in connection with losses emanating from the financial crisis.
  • Recently and successfully represented top reinsurer in connection with World Trade Center (9/11) losses.
  • Recently and successfully represented major U.S. ceding company in connection with World Trade Center (9/11) losses.
  • Recently and successfully represented domestic cedent in connection with claims involving the Boy Scouts of America.
  • Recently and successfully represented top reinsurer in $100M dispute involving treaty’s mechanism for “special acceptances.”
  • Recently and successfully represented domestic reinsurer in dispute over cover for unallocated expenses.
  • Recently and successfully represented domestic cedent in aggregation dispute involving food-related injuries.
  • Recently and successfully represented domestic cedent with respect to claims emanating from large asbestos losses.
  • Recently and successfully represented London insurer in coverage dispute adverse to California and English policyholders.
  • Recently and successfully represented top U.S. cedent in dispute over declaratory judgment expenses.
  • Recently and successfully represented MGA in contract wording dispute.
  • In 2010-2011, represented 14 different reinsurers located in Japan, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, and the United States in domestic litigation involving ECO, XPL, and allocation disputes.
  • In June 2010, obtained summary adjudication award for Top 10 reinsurer in net retention dispute.
  • Successfully represented major domestic cedent in three arbitration matters and collected more than $60M in principal reimbursements, plus interest, from 2006-2008.
  • Argued summary judgment on behalf of Swiss Re in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts in 2003 and in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in 2005. 
    Commercial Union Ins. Company. v. Swiss Reinsurance America Corporation
  • Obtained dismissals for two Bermudan MGA’s in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and Second Circuit in 2000-2001. 
    Odyssey Re (London) Limited v. Stirling Cooke Brown Holdings Limited (“Sphere Drake”).
  • Successfully represented Hartford affiliate on appeal of fraudulent inducement/RICO decision. 
    Compagnie de Reassurance d’Ile de France. v. New England Reinsurance Corporation, 1st Cir. 1995

Publications and Presentations

Mr. Attisani is the 2012 reinsurance editor of the Appleman Insurance treatise.  He has served on the faculty at ARIAS-US (a leading trade association for the insurance and reinsurance arbitration industry), the Excess & Surplus Lines Claims Association (now, IACP), Mealey’s Reinsurance, ABIR (Association of Bermuda Insurers & Reinsurers), the ABA Insurance Coverage Litigation Midyear Meeting, Perrin Conferences (London 2012), the PWC/Hawksmere Reinsurance Congress (Bermuda) and other seminars.  Mr. Attisani co-chaired the Spring 2012 ARIAS Meeting in Palm Beach, Florida, and the Fall 2006 ARIAS Meeting in New York City.  He has been quoted in various trade publications and written several articles, including:

Professional and Community Involvement

Mr. Attisani served as a special prosecutor in the Suffolk County (City of Boston) District Attorney’s Office, where he tried 19 cases to verdict. Mr. Attisani is a member of the International Association of Defense Counsel, one of the most prestigious legal organizations in the world. He is a member of the New York, Massachusetts, Colorado and American Bar Associations.

Education & Credentials

Harvard Law School
JD, 1991, cum laude
Williams College
BA, 1987, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa

Admissions

Massachusetts

New York

Colorado

Clerkships

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York